Crime Spree on the Reservation

Teen-gangster Crips on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community got high on crystal meth and cheap beer and terrorized the reservation with drive-by shootings, murder, beatings, fire-bombings and robberies for two years--until the feds busted them fo

"I said, 'What are you going to do, beat him down with your bat?'" Webster asked Philbert.

"He [Philbert] said, 'No, Arlo [Eschief] has a gun. He'll kill him with the gun.'"

A few minutes later, Arlo Eschief and Riley Junior arrived at Webster's house in Riley Junior's old brown Plymouth.

"You're going to be tested," Riley Junior told Webster as the five drove off. They cruised around, and got drunk before they pulled into the Pavilions parking lot.

Riley Junior waited in the car while the other four went into Philbert's former workplace. They noticed a maintenance worker outside hosing off the sidewalk. He looked at them, went back to his work.

Pat Lindsay immediately recognized his former co-worker Philbert, whom he considered a friend. The two chatted happily while Lindsay prepared the sandwiches that Philbert had ordered.

Eschief seemed to be nervous, went back to the parking lot to confer with Riley Junior. When he came back in, Eschief shot Lindsay in the face.

Lindsay fell to the floor, and Eschief shot him five more times.
"It didn't seem real after the first shot," Webster later recalled.
"It was loud. You couldn't hear nothing."

While Philbert struggled to open the cash register, Nick Pablo kicked the moaning clerk, Webster testified.

"What you gonna do now, punk?" Webster says Pablo said to the dying man as he kicked him.

Eschief grabbed the order Lindsay had prepared. He dropped a bag of chips on the floor, Webster picked it up.

Philbert was too nervous to open the cash register. He grabbed a blue bank bag and walked out of the store with the others.

Webster ran to Riley Junior's parked car.
Riley Junior scolded him for being so "obvious."
They drove around the Pavilions looking for the maintenance man who might possibly identify the group. Riley Junior gave 15-year-old Pablo a gun, told him to shoot the man.

But they couldn't find the maintenance man. Philbert was nervous.
"Let's get the f--- out of Dodge," Philbert said.
They went to Eschief's grandmother's house to hide out. Philbert and Nick Pablo ate the sandwiches, but no one else was hungry. The leftovers were put in the grandmother's refrigerator.

The next day, John Webster went to school.
But he couldn't get the murder out of his head. One evening when he and fellow gangster Norval Antone were walking on the reservation, he detailed the murder for Norval.

Norval promised he wouldn't tell a soul.

Nolan Antone and his son Nolan Jr. were upset by the senselessness of the Subway murder. They felt connected to the Subway store--Nolan Jr. and Philbert had both worked there on different occasions.

When the family talked about the murder, Philbert didn't say much, which wasn't unusual.

A month later, Philbert's probation officer had him arrested for violating the terms of his probation relating to the earlier attempted car theft.

But no one suspected that Philbert had been involved in a murder.

John Webster had proven he had "heart" when he attended the Subway murder. Three weeks after Lindsay was killed, John Webster was called upon again by Riley Junior--to fire-bomb the home of Lonnie Gutierrez. Someone in the Gutierrez family had reportedly whacked someone in the Crip gang with a bat. And Lonnie Gutierrez's son Russell, who did not live with Lonnie, was reportedly a member of the rival Blood gang. This was sufficient cause for violent retaliation.

Webster was ordered to wear his ninja outfit, complete with a black mask.
Various gang members filled 40-ounce beer bottles with gasoline, stuffed the bottles with a rag. Riley Junior taped Webster's fingers with duct tape so there would be no prints on the "Molotov cocktails" that he hurled into the Gutierrez home.

Webster set the house on fire, but he didn't kill anyone. As it turned out, Webster was the only casualty of the evening--he burned his hand.

The terrified Gutierrez family ran out of the house, and the fire was extinguished. But two of the Gutierrez children were so frightened by the event that they moved into another home--permanently.

A few days later, Riley Senior asked Webster about the burn on his hands. When Webster lied about how he'd gotten the burns, Riley Senior said in a gentle, proud, fatherly way, "I know what happened."

A few weeks later, John Webster turned 18. He received his claims money, and dutifully turned over enough for the gang to buy three guns.

Riley Senior invited Webster on a camping trip on the reservation. Webster and Riley Senior climbed a mountain that overlooks the sand-and-gravel pit where Riley Senior's wife was employed. Riley Senior pointed out a trailer that was supposedly filled with dynamite, asked Webster if he could steal the dynamite so they could use it to blow up the police station.

Webster replied that it was impossible--too many security guards. Riley Senior dropped the idea.

A few days later, Webster got yet another assignment, this time from Ricardo: Get the 14-year-old sister of Russell Gutierrez, reportedly a Blood, pregnant so she would have a Crip baby.

"They wanted me to have sex with her, get her pregnant, then leave her," Webster later testified, adding that for a Blood to have a Crip in the house would be a sign of major "disrespect."

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